University of Malta

Study-Unit Description
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TITLE Data Treatment and Probability

LEVEL 00 - Mod Pre-Tert, Foundation, Proficiency & DegreePlus


DEPARTMENT Statistics and Operations Research

DESCRIPTION - Basic Ideas on Treatment of Data
    - Types of Data
    - Data collection
    - Coding and Sorting of Data
    - Presentation of Data

- Descriptive Statistics
    - Frequency Tables and Percentiles
    - Measures of Central Tendency
    - Measures of Dispersion

- Elementary Probability
    - Permutations and Combinations
    - Venn Diagrams and Simple Applications
    - Addition and Multiplication Rules
    - Conditional Probability
    - Mutually Exclusive and Independent Events

- Probability Distributions
    - Discrete Distributions: Uniform, Poisson, Binomial
    - Continuous Distributions: Exponential, Normal
    - Means, Variances and Standard deviations of these distributions

Study-unit Aims:

The aims of this study-unit are to:
- Discriminate between two selection methods (with and without replacement) and familiarize with different types of enumeration (multiplication rule, combinations and permutations);
- Describe the properties of probability and use probability theory to solve problems for mutually exclusive events, independent events and conditional events;
- Discriminate between discrete and continuous random variables and compute their expected value and variance;
- Discriminate between different discrete distributions (Binomial and Poisson) and use these distributions to calculate the probabilities of discrete-type of random variables;
- Discriminate between different continuous distributions (Exponential and Normal) and use these distributions to calculate the probabilities of continuous-type of random variables.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Understand the fundamental concepts of enumerative combinatorics (combinations and permutations) and analytic combinatorics (probability theory);
- Familiarize with the concepts of expectation and variation and use these statistical tools to estimate the mean and variance of discrete and continuous random variables;
- Discriminate between different types of discrete and continuous distributions and use these distributions to compute the probabilities of events.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Solve real life problems related to combinatorics and probability;
- Identify the appropriate distribution of specific discrete and continuous variables and use the properties of these distributions to solve probability problems;
- Use computer software, particularly EXCEL and SPSS, to carry out Descriptive Statistics and compute the probabilities of events for specific distributions, including the Binomial, Poisson, Exponential and Normal distribution.

Suitable arrangements will be made for time and space to be allocated to the instruction and use in practice of elementary modules in statistical software, time and human resources permitting. The package/s, which will be used, would preferably form part of some widely used software like readily available spreadsheet applications.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

- Freund, J. E. and Simon, G. A. (1995) Statistics - A First Course, Prentice Hall Inc.
- Speigel, M. R. (1979) Schaum's Outline Series: Theory & Problems of Statistics - McGraw-Hill.
- Sander, D. (1995) Statistics - A First Course - McGraw-Hill.
- Freund, J. E. and Simon, G. A. (1997) Modern Elementary Statistics, Prentice Hall Inc.
- Rees, D.G. (1989) Essential Statistics - 2nd Edition, Chapman and Hall.
- Freund, J. E. (1981) Statistics - A First Course - 3rd Edition, Prentice Hall Inc.
- Johnson, R. (1981) Elementary Statistics - 4th Edition, Duxbury Press Boston.
- Harper, W.M. (1991) Statistics - 5th Edition, M and E Handbook Series.
- Gilbert, N. (1988) Statistics - 2nd Edition, Saunders College Publisher.
- J.A. Ingram (1977) Elementary Statistics, Cummings Publishing Co.
- Alastair, C. and Wardlaw (1999) Practical Statistics for experimental Biologists - 2nd Edition, Wiley.
- Campbell, R.C. (1989) Statistics for Biologists - 3rd Edition, Cambridge University Press.
- Newbold, P. (1995) Statistics for Business and Economics - 4th Edition, Prentice Hall Inc.
- Barrow, M. (2001) Statistics for Economics, Accounting and Business Studies, Financial Times Prentice Hall Inc.
- Knapp, R. G. (1984) Basic Statistics for Nurses - 2nd Edition, Delmar.
- Finkelstein, M. and Levin, B. (2001) Statistics for Lawyers - 2nd Edition, Springer.

ADDITIONAL NOTES Pre-requisite Qualification: ‘O’ Level Mathematics

1st Year students are to take this study-unit in the 2nd semester, while students in any other year are to take this unit in the 1st semester.

This study-unit cannot be taken by B.Sc. (Hons) Statistics & OR students.


Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Computer-based Examination (1 Hour and 30 Minutes) Yes 100%

LECTURER/S Monique Sciortino
Liberato Camilleri
Linniker Grech
Lynsey Schembri

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2017/8, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.
MSc (Research) and PhD application deadlines
Application Deadlines for Academic Year 2017/18 
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